New coral sowing technique could help with reef restoration

A team from nonprofit group Secore International have come up with a new way to restore corals, using a sowing approach that's cheaper and easier than conventional methods.


NSFW    CURACAO — Researchers have found a new way to restore dying corals, using a method similar to how farmers scatter seedlings onto a field.

With the world's corals deteriorating at an alarming rate, and restoration often slow and laborious, a team of scientists from nonprofit group Secore International has come up with a better approach to sowing corals.

According to Secore, the new method involves harvesting coral larvae and planting them on tetrapod-shaped cement substrates. In a few weeks, the larvae will turn into coral polyps which can be sown on the reef. The seeding units don't require manual attachment and only need to be wedged into reef's crevices. One day, they can be sown from boats or by underwater drone.

Twelve months after the sowing, the scientists found at least one coral growing on half the units.

They believe the technique can sow 10,000 corals in just 50 working hours, compared to the hundreds or even thousands of hours needed for common restoration methods.

The team is currently working to refine each step of their novel sowing approach.
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